Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Waiting on Wednesday: Dystopian Version

20 Years Later by Emma Newman
Publication Date: July 5, 2011
Published by: Dystopia Press

LONDON, 2012: IT arrives and with that the world is changed into an unending graveyard littered with the bones, wreckage, and memories of a dead past, gone forever.

LONDON, 2032: Twenty years later, out of the ashes, a new world begins to rise, a place ruled by both loyalty and fear, and where the quest to be the first to regain lost knowledge is an ongoing batt...more
LONDON, 2012: IT arrives and with that the world is changed into an unending graveyard littered with the bones, wreckage, and memories of a dead past, gone forever.

LONDON, 2032: Twenty years later, out of the ashes, a new world begins to rise, a place ruled by both loyalty and fear, and where the quest to be the first to regain lost knowledge is an ongoing battle for power. A place where laws are made and enforced by roving gangs—the Bloomsbury Boys, the Gardners, the Red Lady’s Gang—who rule the streets and will do anything to protect their own.

THE FOUR: Zane, Titus, Erin, Eve. Living in this new world, they discover that they have abilities never before seen. And little do they know that as they search post-apocalyptic London for Titus’ kidnapped sister that they’ll uncover the secret of It, and bring about a reckoning with the forces that almost destroyed all of humanity.

Why I Chose This:

It sounds amazing!! Don’t you agree? And that new world is bound to be fierce and dangerous. Love it already! There’s so much mystery and tension in the description. I wanna know what It is. So far I have never read a dystopian set in London. This will be new.

Pure by Julianna Baggott
Publication Date: TBA 2011
Published by: Grand Central Publishing

A dystopian novel about a society of haves, who escaped an apocalypse in a futuristic dome-covered city, and have-nots, who survived the nearly destroyed outside world. The have-nots are almost entirely marked or mutated in some manner.

PURE centers around the story of Pressia, a 16-year-old survivor with a doll’s head fused into her left hand, and Partridge, an unmarked Pure who has escaped the Dome to find his mother, certain that she has survived the cataclysm.

Why I Chose This:

This reminds me of my Social Science II class. Haves and have-nots. I can see a struggle between the classes here. The heroine has a doll’s head fused to her left hand. Does it talk? I have no idea but we’ll see what happens! Oh and Pure is going to be a movie! So yay for that – another dystopian movie for us!

What are your picks this Wednesday? Link below please so I could see them! :)

Review: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

Book Description:

E-galley, 384
April 26, 2011, Harlequin Teen

Every girl who has taken the test has died.

Now it's Kate's turn.

It's always been just Kate and her mom--and now her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate's going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won't live past the fall.

Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld--and if she accepts his bargain, he'll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.

Kate is sure he's crazy--until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she'll become Henry's future bride, and a goddess.

If she fails..

Source: Netgalley & Harlequin Teen (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

The Goddess Test was really evocative. After the first 14 pages, I was in love with it. Kate’s feelings for her mother were so strong that I found myself feeling her pain, her sadness and her fear of the inevitable future without her mother. This initially became the driving force for Kate to strive to accept Henry’s offer and to pass the seven tests. But as time passed, Kate found another reason to keep fighting and hoping. Her life has been suspended, stopped for years starting when her mother got diagnosed. Her life was all about her mom. Inside the gates of Eden, Kate was able to live for another purpose, for another person.

Henry was very interesting. There was something with the kind of pain and sadness that he endured and experienced through the years that drew me in. I love that Hades was portrayed not as the bad guy but as the victim of fate. He loved and lost. He was not the one who took advantage. He was the understanding one – the one who made sacrifices for his love. His offer to Kate led them both to a complicated relationship – a strained partnership that ventures past friendship into something a little more intimate. It was agony and joy to read all about it. Some people might say that it was unbelievable but we need to consider that Henry was a god. He was gorgeous, had an unnatural charm and was incredibly generous and kind to Kate. He also gave Kate the one thing that she would do anything for – more time for her mother.

Carter did a good job with making me feel the emotions of the characters. I was very affected. The writing seemed very true, bled out of strong emotions. I found out it extremely difficult to stop reading. The characters were very fun and interesting, each one having different struggles with their lives or afterlives. Seeing them interact with Kate was always entertaining. Neither too funny nor too scary, The Goddess Test was able to possess something in between – a delicious mix of light humour, slightly fate-related-scary, sweet romance, pain, sadness and hope. As the story progressed, I found a few things that were predictable. I was able to guess some of the gods in the council and I was able to guess some of the things that would happen but I was also surprised with several twists.

Readers will love this unique retelling with a gorgeous and not-so-evil Hades who will make pulses quicken. The Goddess Test is an amazing debut that I would never get tired of reading no matter what happens. Addicting, romantic, sweet, this captured my heart right from the start. I recommend this to people who like Greek mythology and gods/goddess stories!


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Review: Through Her Eyes by Jennifer Archer

Book Description:

ARC, 384
April 5, 2011, Harper Teen

Every ghost has a story to tell.

The last place Tansy Piper wants to be is stuck in Cedar Canyon, Texas, in the middle of nowhere, with a bunch of small-town kids. But when her mother decides to move to the desolate West Texas town, Tansy has no choice but to go along. Once there, Tansy is immediately drawn to the turret of their rickety old house, a place she soon learns has a disturbing history. But it's the strange artifacts she finds in the cellar—a pocket watch, a journal of poetry, and a tiny crystal—that have the most chilling impact on her.

Tansy soon finds that through the lens of her camera, she can become part of a surreal black-and-white world where her life is intertwined with that of mysterious, troubled Henry, who lived in the same house and died decades earlier. It seems their lives are linked by fate and the artifacts she found, but as Tansy begins spending more and more time in the past, her present world starts to fade away. Tansy must untangle herself from Henry's dangerous reality—before she loses touch with her own life forever.

Source: Jennifer Archer (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

Being the new girl for the nth time, Tansy was not pleased to be stuck in Cedar Canyon. With a school that only had two hall ways, filled with people who have known each other their whole lives, Tansy was finding it hard to fit in. No one really cared about the new girl. That was until she met Bethyl Ann aka Stinky, a genius thirteen year old who kept spewing Shakespearean quotes. I liked how every character had a story to tell.

Through the lens of her camera, she not only saw a different side of Cedar Canyon and its people but she also a black-and-white world – Henry’s world. There was a bird that relentlessly sings to her, a journal filled with strong and emotional poetry, a teardrop-shaped crystal and a golden watch stuck at 12:22. Through these things, Henry Peterson connected with Tansy. It was strange, freaky and frightening. As Tansy tried to make sense of what message Henry was trying to tell her, her grandfather’s situation got worse and so did her life in school.

The time-travel through the photographs was very vivid and intriguing. I found myself looking forward to them through the photographs. But Through Her Eyes was not only about the paranormal. It was also a novel about adjusting, making friends, opening up to people, seeing the good in them and accepting who they were. Opening up to complete strangers was difficult but in the end she learned to do that and to forget about her preconceived notions about people. I loved how Tansy learned to see who she was and discovered where she belonged through her paranormal experiences.

Through Her Eyes is a great debut filled with strangeness, creepiness and sad and tragic stories. I loved how Archer built the tension between Tate and Tansy and how she stirred them to a fragile friendship. It was very realistic for me. The ending was very peaceful and satisfying – a perfect end to a troublesome and disturbing experience.



Sunday, March 27, 2011

Through Her Eyes Writing Challenge + Live Chat with Ellen Schreiber

Ever doodled something to capture a memory? A moment of your life? Or about someone else’s life? This is the chance to go back to that piece and use it!

What to do: Write a story, poem or essay about a photograph you would like to step into to enter a moment in time from the past.

Prizes: Two writers and two commenters will also be selected to win a copy of THROUGH HER EYES as well as three additional books of their choice from the HarperTeen catalog. Winners will be announced here on inkpop Forums.

Number of Winners: Four

Through Her Eyes Writing Challenge Details:
inkpop Challenge Marker: ic#54
Format Selection: Any
Genre: Short Story,Poem, Essay
Launch Date: March 24, 2011
Deadline: March 31st, 2011 (12 p.m. EST)

To find out more info on how to join, go HERE.

Live Chat with Ellen Schreiber
When: Wednesday, March 30, 2011 5:00p.m. Eastern Time
Where: InkPop Forum

Topic: Many inkpoppers have asked, is it possible to juggle more than one project at a time? Ellen Schreiber will talk about her experience writing multiple series at the same time.

Ellen Schreiber is writing simultaneously. Since its publication in 2003, Vampire Kisses, Ellen Schreiber's first YA series, has sold over a million copies and has gone on to become a New York Times Bestseller. Just as she's wrapping up the Vampire Kisses series--the 8th will be published in May and the final book in the series will be out in September--she begins a new series, this time about werewolves entitled Once in a Full Moon.

For more info, go HERE.

Source: InkPop

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Review: Memento Nora by Angie Smibert

Book Description:

ARC, 184 pages
April 1, 2011, Marshall Cavendish

Nora, the popular girl and happy consumer, witnesses a horrific bombing on a shopping trip with her mother. In Nora’s near-future world, terrorism is so commonplace that she can pop one little white pill to forget and go on like nothing ever happened. However, when Nora makes her first trip to a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic, she learns what her mother, a frequent forgetter, has been frequently forgetting. Nora secretly spits out the pill and holds on to her memories. The memory of the bombing as well as her mother’s secret and her budding awareness of the world outside her little clique make it increasingly difficult for Nora to cope. She turns to two new friends, each with their own reasons to remember, and together they share their experiences with their classmates through an underground comic. They soon learn, though, they can’t get away with remembering.

Source: Marshall Cavendish & Diana (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

Memento Nora was a quick read but it was enough to tickle my mind. Nora’s society experienced constant attacks by terrorists to the extent that it became an almost daily thing. Bombings, blood and death were everywhere. The survivors and witnesses fled to TFC and swallowed a pill to avoid trauma and wipe out bad memories from their heads. For me, memories are very important. I would fight for them just to keep them in my head. Not all memories are good but there is always a reason for the bad ones.

Nora did not swallow her first pill from TFC. She carried the weight of her mom’s forgotten memory, as well as her own. It was not easy to know that she did not know her mom well. She knew that her mom frequented TFC for a reason and it made her sad. She met Micah, a boy from her school who was also in TFC when she first visited. They both refused to swallow the forgetting pill for their own reasons and together, they worked on Memento – their way of preserving their memories and telling it to people. But as the days passed, Memento was no longer just a tangible evidence of the things they have seen and experienced, it could also be the perfect medium in letting everyone know who were the ones responsible for the violence in their city.

Memento Nora was told from the perspectives of Nora, Micah and Winter – three teenagers with different problems and situations. Nora was a rich prep, the girl who got everything she wanted, Daddy’s girl. She was the one who worked on the dialogue and the story of Memento along with Micah, the artist. Micah had a crush on Nora but his best friend, Winter, did not think that Nora was good for him. But aside from Nora being the girl who never talked to them, she had other reasons. When their comic book attracted the attention of several people, Nora and her friends knew that things could get messy. Soon they were being chased. There was a price for remembering.

The ending was perfect. I will never forget it. It stirred something inside me. Memento Nora is disturbing, terrifying, lonely, nostalgic and violent. I found myself anticipating and dreading the next chapter. So much happened in this little book – more than I imagined. I recommend this to dystopian enthusiasts!